UPDATE: Chaos erupted on the floor during what essentially were two roll calls at the Republican National Convention but, in the end, the “Never Trump” effort failed.
The announcement that three states had backed out caused an uproar that drowned out almost everything else. As the rebels shouted to be recognized, delegates erupted into dueling chants of “We want the vote!” and “We want Trump!”
And as if Republican leaders would want a souvenir, they’ll have it: A group photo from the event taken right after the floor fight will feature empty seats from where delegates who walked out in protest were still missing.
ORIGINAL POST: The “Never Trump” movement apparently isn’t taking “no” for an answer, with multiple reports Monday afternoon that delegates from nine states are rebelling against efforts to move forward as planned in Cleveland.
According to a just-posted report from Politico, there’s a chance they may succeed in forcing a floor vote on the minority report to the GOP convention rules:
Cleveland — Republicans looking to unseat Donald Trump as their party’s presidential nominee appear to have the signatures they need to force a full vote on the national convention rules, a move intended to provide a platform for anti-Trump voices and to embarrass the billionaire.
To force that vote, the faction would need signatures from the majority of delegates from 7 states or territories. According to documents provided to POLITICO, they have a majority of signatures from 9: Colorado, Washington state, Utah, Minnesota, Wyoming, Maine, Iowa, Virginia and Washington, D.C.
The group is looking to force a floor vote from all 2,472 RNC delegates on the convention rules that the 112-member Rules Committee advanced last week. Those guidelines require delegates to vote for the candidate their state rules previously mandated, which paves the way for Trump to win the nomination.
Some predicted the floor vote would fall short:
Regardless, the scene in Cleveland appeared to be a frantic one on Monday afternoon.
A "Never Trump" delegate claimed the convention secretary was hiding so that they would not have to accept their packet of signatures calling for a floor vote:
Later, reports surfaced that the delegates who signed the document were being pressured by party officials to change their minds and head off a vote.
A little earlier this afternoon, the Associated Press reported that members of the GOP convention’s rules committee weren’t having it:
Members of the GOP convention’s rules committee say there will be no changes that could deny the Republican nomination to Donald Trump.
There are still efforts to force a state-by-state roll call on the rules for the convention. Such a maneuver could draw out the process and disrupt the flow of the convention. But it won’t change the outcome.
“The war is over, Donald Trump will be the nominee,” said Bruce Ash, an Arizona delegate who sits on the rules committee.
Dissident delegates want to change the rules to allow them to vote their conscience. Under current rules, they must vote for the candidate who won them.
Starting in Iowa and New Hampshire, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has brought you every key moment in the 2016 presidential race, and our in-depth coverage will continue at the political conventions. Our team of seasoned political reporters will be on the ground in Cleveland and Philadelphia to bring you every development from these pivotal campaign events. An expanded editorial team in the Atlanta newsroom will round out coverage of both conventions.
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